Eli Tomac of Cortez finished second Saturday in the 450 Supercross in Foxborough, Massachusetts, after a fierce late-lap duel for the lead with Marvin Musquin.
Musquin led Tomac for 21 laps until Tomac got past him in the 22nd.
His lead didn’t last long.
Musquin battled back in the final lap, and hit Tomac as he passed him. Tomac went down, but got up to finish second, about 25 seconds behind Musquin.
Series-leading Jason Anderson was a distant third, about 32.5 seconds back. Blake Baggett and Dean Wilson rounded out the Top 5.
In the post race interview, Tomac didn’t pull punches in his description of the crash.
“It was kinda cat and mouse race there,” Tomac said, adding that he made a clean pass to the lead before Musquin hit him
“I got blasted from the inside on that second turn,” he said. “It was out of nowhere, and it was a cheap shot.”
Musquin focused on a summary of his race before responding to Tomac.
“I led so many laps, and I was bummed,” Musquin said. “I saw right there that inside (line), and I was going into that main rut the whole main, and he cut it really tight and I definitely didn’t expect it. And obviously the outcome was pretty brutal, and I’m sorry about what happened with the crash, but it could have been bad for me too.”
Later in the postrace conference, Tomac suggested that riders be fined points in the standings for hard passes, rather than a few thousand dollars.
Until the final two laps, the race looked like a two-man show.
As the gate dropped for the main event at Gillette Stadium, Christian Craig, Musquin, Tomac and Anderson went to the lead of the pack. Craig crashed, leaving the series’ top three riders in front, with Musquin about a second ahead of Tomac and Anderson about 5 seconds back.
Musquin ran his fastest lap in the 15th, but Tomac responded. In the 17th lap, Tomac made a charge to close to within about a half-second of Musquin, and Musquin responded again with the throttle. In the 19th lap, Tomac again challenged, but couldn’t get past Musquin.
Tomac passed Musquin in the 22nd lap, running his fastest lap of the race. Musquin charged back, and hit Tomac as he challenged him on the inside of a curve. Tomac got back on his Kawasaki to finish second ahead of Anderson, who had dropped to 32.5 seconds off the lead.
After the race, Tomac said the crash damaged his throttle, and he feared that he wouldn’t be able to finish the race.
Earlier on Saturday, Tomac set the pace in qualifying rounds, then placed second in his heat to Justin Barcia.
Tomac started the heat race in sixth place after one lap, but quickly passed Vince Friese and Weston Peick to moved into fourth place in the second lap, then picked off Chad Reed in the fourth. Trailing leader Barcia and Baggett for two laps, Tomac got past Baggett in the sixth lap to duel Barcia for the lead.
In the eighth and final lap, Tomac challenged Barcia, but came up just short, placing second by less than a second. Baggett was third, 2.238 seconds behind Barcia. Peick and Reed filled out the Top 5.
In the first heat, Anderson beat Musquin by less than a second. Malcolm Stewart, Justin Brayton and Tyler Bowers rounded out the Top 5.
The Monster Energy AMA Supercross series next heads to Salt Lake City on April 28, then wraps up the season in Las Vegas on May 4.
StandingsOverall standings in the 450 Monster Energy AMA Supercross series, April 21.
1. Jason Anderson (Husqvarna): 332
2. Marvin Musquin (KTM): 298
3. Eli Tomac (Kawasaki): 269
4. Justin Brayton (Honda): 247
5. Blake Baggett (KTM): 243
6. Weston Peick (Suzuki): 219
7. Broc Tickle (KTM): 184
8. Dean Wilson (Husqvarna) 183
9. Cooper Webb (Yamaha): 181
10. Malcolm Stewart (Suzuki): 150